Increased EA charges for habitat projects - consultation closes 14 February

Before the Wild Trout Trust can deliver habitat improvement projects, we often have to apply for, and be granted, Flood Defence Consent (FDC) from the EA in England. The FDC process applies to all work on main rivers – which is almost every project we deliver.

This is a necessary bit of red tape’ as it checks that the work we do won’t cause an unacceptable flood risk.
Currently, FDC applications cost £50 each though our close partnership with many EA area teams often means that fee is waived. In an attempt to recover some of their admin cost, the EA in England is proposing to increase this fee to £170 plus a £70 compliance check fee (and the possibility of further charges for multiple structures on one site).

Clearly the money for this will come out of the project budget, and not be spent on delivering habitat improvement. We feel this is nonsense, especially when we are very often partnering with the EA to deliver these projects very cost effectively to help them achieve their (and our) targets! 

In their attempt to raise money from the FDC process, the EA will either stop, or make more expensive, many of the projects they are keen to sponsor.

We have made this clear in the consultation which is currently underway. If you feel strongly (as we do) please add your voice to the consultation.

The consultation closes on 14 February, and you can enter your comments here.

Click here for a copy of WTT’s draft response.